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  • Writer's pictureChristina Guo

Integrating Gaming Experience Into Your Elementary Classroom

Using games in classrooms is slowly becoming a standard tool to help teachers enhance learning among their students. It can help students learn social skills and critical thinking and motivate them to learn new things.

How's Gaming Affecting Their Future Careers?

Playing games requires you to learn communication, follow instructions, and complete tasks on time. Over time, many games help you develop problem-solving skills, pattern recognition, strategic planning, and leadership qualities that can help you excel in any given career.

Gaming in school can also turn you into a risk-taker and teach you to think out of the box. All games also require everyone to have a basic understanding of IT, which is essential in almost all the currently available jobs. Kids can also turn gaming into their career, working with developers in the future or becoming professional gamers.

The Benefit Of Bringing Gamification Learning Into The Classroom

Teachers and schools have been increasingly trying to introduce gamification in their classrooms because the results have been encouraging. Gamification learning has taught students how to deal with instructions and promotes a more collaborative and teamwork approach.

Many educators who have used gaming have even described it as a disguise to help children learn and make fun of. It has also given teachers the power to make their content and control it to suit the specific needs of the students.

Using gaming in classrooms has also taught students how to communicate with each other and brainstorm ideas on how to solve problems. Overall, it has created an engaging learning experience for students where they are improving their social skills and emotional learning.

Over time, they also try different methods to do the same thing, which has motivated them to think out of the box and take risks. A few games used in classrooms have also resulted in students improving their academic scores and developing a better attitude toward studying.

Gaming needs to be used correctly, and the kind of game introduced should directly resonate with the type of learning you want to instill in your students. It has also been observed that it helps students who have ADHD in improved knowledge and skills.

How to Choose the Right Game for Your Classroom?

Many games have been introduced to classrooms based on individual approaches of teachers and different requirements of students as well. In a few types of research done by the SPI students who had the game vs. those who didn't have the fun, their improvement difference in achievements ranged from 12-25%.

It appears that different teachers will employ gamification or game-based learning differently.

To teach kids how to write more descriptively, Joe Dillon developed a poem-writing game using Minecraft: Education Edition that has them navigating a maze and visiting several rooms. This activity, modeled by Georgia Heard's Six-Room-Poem round, directs children through specific writing tasks, including describing an object by emphasizing its surroundings.

Sixth-grade students use Google Maps Treks, which offer a 360-degree view of the ancient structures, to embark on a quest inside the Great Pyramid and solve a mystery as they travel. The game was created by Kendra Cameron-Jarvis, an instructional technologist for Buncombe County Schools in western North Carolina. According to her, the game enhances what kids learn about ancient Egypt in class.

Teachers can structure the complexity levels of a game matched to the current aptitude of the student to increase the possibility that all kids will participate.

Banerjee advises teachers to employ a variety of low-stakes leaderboards—scoreboards that display participants' names and scores—to highlight frequently disregarded activities or skills in a way that acknowledges contributions from kids who generally perform poorly on conventional assignments.

For instance, users embark on mini-missions to find and save endangered animal species in the online game Alba: A Wildlife Adventure.

Little You is an idea that allows children to share their creations with their families, classmates, and social media friends. This process of sharing helps to enhance their social development and build confidence. In addition, the general public can enjoy, share, and purchase the models that the children have created.

Choosing a game is based on what sort of learning you want for your students. There are many online reviews of different games and what they bring to the table. You can go through all of them and decide which one suits your students or requirements the most.

Education Online, Teach Hub, and Edutopia are a few sites you can visit for some reviews and understanding.

You can also follow researchers like Antero Garcia, an assistant professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Education who studies the impact of technology and gaming on youth literacy and civic identities.

The Takeaway!

This innovative approach is working all across the globe. Many teachers are trying to customize ways to use gamification and game-based learning to aid kids in developing better learning skills which will help them in their academic and professional careers while improving their attitude and adding some fun to the learning progress.

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